The combination of electronic music and pop is a delicate one, carefully mastered by U.K. duo AlunaGeorge on their debut studio album, Body Music (out now on Vagrant). The partnership, comprised of Aluna Francis and George Reid, couples smooth vocals with diversely slick production that hardly errs on the side of cheesy, despite the fact that most of their songs are playful love ballads. As acts like Quadron and Jessie Ware make their way Stateside, ... Read More
   From Prince to Bob Dylan to Ray Charles, Mavis Staples has made music with a diverse array of great songwriters over the course of her 53-year career. She continues this tradition on One True Vine, her second collaboration with Wilco frontman Jeff Tweedy. The record is mix of covers and new songs, all performed with minimal instrumentation. A few tracks (including a striking rendition of Parliament Funkadelic’s “Can You Get to That”) ... Read More
She’s 27, she’s Jewish, and she wears Gucci: she’s Mindy Budgor and she’s the first female Maasai warrior in recorded history. For that reason alone, it’s important to read Warrior Princess, but that’s not the only reason. It’s also surprisingly funny; you will LOL a lot, probably very hard. Budgor hails from Chicago and, out of a hazy sense of purpose, was applying for a master’s in business when she heard the ... Read More
Pop star Janelle Monáe is at once retro and futuristic, disarmingly down-to-earth and freakishly abstract. Here, she reveals the strategy behind her trendsetting look, the origins of her “divinely inspired” alter ego, and what it’s like to hang out with the president Janelle Monáe mayhave been born to sing, dance, and write some of the most creative pop albums ever to hit an iPod, but the world wouldn’t have known ... Read More
  She's a multimedia artist, a musician, a vocalist, a staunch feminist, and a tireless activist. And Yoko Ono shows no signs of slowing down. Quite the opposite. In recent days, Yoko has scored her tenth consecutive #1 dance hit, "Hold Me," created an installation about the dangers of hydraulic fracturing ("fracking"), curated the 20th anniversary of the UK’s Meltdown Festival, recorded a new Plastic Ono Band album with her son, Sean Lennon, and - as ... Read More
[On June 30th], Ohio's budget was signed into law by Governor John Kasich. Ohio now has some of the strictest regulations on abortion access in the nation. Although Planned Parenthood will be losing over 1.4 million dollars in funding, the budget allows continued support for "Crisis Pregnancy Centers," which we've worked extensively to debunk and inform the public about. CPCs are dangerous and do not provide real, comprehensive support for women seeking out family ... Read More
If you like to dance, Sónar is the perfect place for you to nod your head till it falls off. Also known as the Sónar Festival for Advanced Music and New Media Art, the electronic-dance fest is one of the most exciting music events in Barcelona. This June 13th-16th, Sónar celebrated its 20th birthday and it was no less than a complete success. Over the course of four full days of fresh indie jams from all over the world, the festival boasted ... Read More
If you’ve ever sold yourself short professionally, there might be more at work than you think. A new study sheds light on some of the reasons why women tend to give their colleagues more credit than they give themselves, especially when working on stereotypically masculine tasks with male co-workers. The 'Who-Me?' face is probably not your best workplace look. Researcher Michelle Haynes, a psychology professor at University of Massachusetts Lowell, was first ... Read More
On her quietly brilliant 2011 solo debut, Last Summer, the Fiery Furnaces singer/guitarist Eleanor Friedberger dialed back the art-pop zaniness of her day job several notches, which gave her verbose travelogues welcome breathing room. On Personal Record, Friedberger settles further into a vintage, Laurel Canyon-inspired sonic space, in which sparkling electric pianos and swirling organs commune with her sweetly brash ... Read More
Following her debut novel, The City is a Rising Tide, Rebecca Lee presents a collection of seven biting stories about the luxury we take in life’s ordinary comforts, and the threats, real or imagined, that lurk beyond the surface. As of this writing, Bobcat was longlisted for the international Frank O’Connor Prize for story collections, and the praise is due: with deadpan humor, Lee’s light touch illuminates the contrasts in everyday ... Read More
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